Zsolt Palotai (Photo: Pro Cultura Urbis)
Photo: János Pelikán
Zsolt Palotai, one of the best-known domestic disc jockeys, died at the age of sixty-two. The news of the death of the artist known as DJ Palotai was reported by his friends and colleagues on social media. Among others, musician-journalist Balázs Pándi and music journalist Péter Pritz said goodbye to him.
Several people referred to him as the greatest of the domestic DJ profession, one of the engines of the underground. He was regarded as one of the most important adopters of electronic music, drum and bass and breakbeat, and he was an important figure in Hungarian musical life from the beginning of the nineties. During the regime change, Tilos was the artistic director of Á Klub and then the chief music editor of Tilos Rádió.
His father was the Olympic champion soccer player and referee, Károly Palotai, who died five years ago.
Zsolt Palotai received the Pro Cultura Urbis award on the day of his death, along with the likes of film director Zsigmond Gábor Papp and cultural manager Viktória Rozgonyi-Kulcsár. In the announcement of the prize awarded for enriching the values of the capital’s culture, it was written: Palotai’s name is intertwined with the Hungarian underground music scene, he has been a key player in the industry for thirty years, and he is the DJ with the greatest musical outlook in the country.
A big interview with the well-known disc jockey was published on RTL.hu just a few days ago. In this, Palotai talked about how the biggest difference between the music of the 2000s and today’s music is that today’s music is much sadder. “There is no future. This is what you feel,” he said. He also said that he thinks the mood is a little worse now than it was before 1989. “I always thought that three things would never change in my life: the system, the Russians, and the weather. When people ask what we did before ’89, I usually say that we waited for time to pass. As if I feel that way now. The difference is that even though I thought it would never change, it was always a little better, so we got out of it. Now we are still going inward and we don’t see the end, but almost nothing, so not even the light at the end of the tunnel,” explained the DJ.
Palotai also said in the interview that he is in internal emigration, and since Tilos has been linked to him, he doesn’t have many chances anymore. He also added that half of his audience has now emigrated, and since he doesn’t have his own parties, the situation is much more difficult, there is hardly any room left to play, and where he could, he doesn’t have a chance.